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Apollo Hospitals, Chennai performs India's first VenaSeal procedure to treat varicose veins on a 40-year-old patient

11 Jun 2019

Apollo Hospitals, Chennai is the first centre in India to perform a modern varicose vein removal surgery on Mr. Thanigavelu 40-year-old, using VenaSeal closure system. VenaSeal closure system is a minimally invasive treatment option that permanently treats varicose veins of the legs by sealing the affected superficial veins using an adhesive agent.

There are two types of veins; deep veins and superficial veins; superficial veins are those that are close to the skin. Veins contain one-way valves that open to let blood flow through and then shut to keep blood from flowing backward. When valves of the superficial system are weak or damaged, blood can back up and pool, which can cause varicose veins that are enlarged, swollen or twisted.

More than 190 million people suffer from Chronic Venous Insufficiency or Varicose Veins globally, yet the majority remains undiagnosed or untreated. Traditionally, the Stripping Surgery was the only option available for patients with Varicose veins. The procedure is performed under general anesthesia and usually needs a week or two for patient's recovery. Other disadvantages include pain, bruising and unnecessary scarring. Secondly, laser was used to treat and seal varicose veins, this was one of the most effective procedure than stripping but requires multiple injections of local anesthesia until the advent of VenaSeal. The VenaSeal system is intended for patients with superficial varicose veins of the legs that cause symptoms.

Speaking about the procedure Dr. V. Balaji, Senior Consultant Vascular Surgeon, Apollo Hospitals Chennai, "The two previous methods of permanent varicose vein removal were more invasive, patient recovery was much longer and procedure was uncomfortable and hence, this new method is a real breakthrough. The minimally invasive procedure does not require general anesthesia and does not affect the functioning of the nearby nerves."

In this method, the Vascular Surgeon inserts a catheter through the skin into the diseased vein to allow injection of the VenaSeal adhesive, a clear liquid that polymerises into solid material. The health-care professional monitors proper placement of the catheter using ultrasound imaging during delivery of the adhesive into the diseased vein to seal it.

Bringing the technology to India, Dr. Andrew Jones, MD, from Oregon USA, said "Varicose veins often cause no symptoms but some patients may experience mild to moderate pain, blood clots, skin ulcers or other problem. Venaseal has helped many patients suffering from Varicose veins walk in and walk out of his clinic in USA. VenaSeal procedure is shown to be safe and effective, with consistent results across three clinical trials. So far, patients reported minimal to no pain or bruising after the procedure."

The VenaSeal treatment involves no heat and just one injection. With virtually no down time, patients can return to their normal activities immediately.

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